Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Allegation of attempt to discourage sexual assault complaints

The U.S. armed forces continue to fight sexual assault in the ranks. Under intense congressional scrutiny, cases are going to trial, resulting in (predictably) some convictions and some acquittals. Disturbing testimony was heard yesterday in an Army court-martial at Ft. Leonard Wood in Missouri:
An Army National Guardsman testified here Tuesday that her company of soldiers in training was told by a high-ranking noncommissioned officer that the group might not graduate if additional reports of sexual assault surfaced
From the bench, Third Circuit Court Chief Trial Judge Col. Jeffrey Nance asked the low-ranking guardsman, who now lives in Maryland, for clarification.
The woman, Private Alleita Gray, testified that 14th Military Police Brigade Command Sgt. Major Scott Dooley told her company that “if any more sexual assault cases come forward” the whole company of soldiers wouldn't graduate. The comment came several months ago during advanced individual training, Gray said. Such a class could have anywhere from 100 to 200 soldiers in it.
“Well, that's remarkable, but not relevant,” Nance said in response.
The Army declined to comment because the court-martial is still going on.

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